Friday, January 26, 2018

Wanna Come Out and Play?

Don't we all want to be asked to come out and play? It means we add something to the means, in some way, we matter.

A number of issues can create a situation in which we aren't asked to come out and play as often. The new girl who moved in down the block is a better athlete or the new guy plays the piano or has a great music collection. The new employee has skills you don't have. The industry shifts.

What happened?

Things changed.

It's a cliche' to say, "the only constant is change," but as Jimmy Buffett sings, "Cliches say what they mean and mean what they say."

What's a change that's happening in your life right now?

Here are three things to think about. Let me give thanks to William Bridges, author of the Transitions books, and Seth Godin, author of The Dip for their wisdom:

- First, you have to recognize that change is here and whatever was working in the past--in that area--has ended. Do some grieving for the loss of the familiar and then pack your bags, it's time to get moving.

- You'll get to a point at which you'll be in what Godin calls "the Dreaded Middle." I call it, "The Wilderness." You'll feel lost. The best solution is to create short-term goals, reward yourself for achieving them and keep moving. Winston Churchill said, "When you're moving through Hell, keep moving."

- You'll eventually get to a New Beginning as Godin labels beginning. Now is the time to celebrate. You may not have wanted the change to happen, but you're here now. Look around and recognize what is good about it, raise a glass, and know that there will be a day when the new beginning will be the norm.

As for the change--or changes--in your life, which of the three phases are you in right now?

Thursday, January 18, 2018

What to Do On a Snow Day

What will you do with a snow day?

Granted, some folks MUST go to work and we should thank all the first responders and people who show up snow, rain, shine or hailing streetcars.

But, if you are home today--working from home is what you're tellig everyone--what are you going to get done?

Try this...pick 3 work things to get done...they don't have to be monumental, big-time projects...they can be some of those annoying things that you never seem to find time in the office to do...but, they need to be done.

Pick those things.

And then, get'em done.

And then, have some fun! Snow days aren't meant to be drudgery Get into that kid who is still in your head--sometimes buried under all that grown-up stuff--and have a snowball fight, go sledding, take a walk and enjoy the beauty of it all.

Stay warm.

Monday, January 15, 2018

"If a man is called to be a street sweeper...

“If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as a Michaelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, 'Here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.' ”

Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

You might not read this...but you should...

This is waaaay more important than you might think...the edited story below comes from The Hustle, an eletter based in San Franscisco...ask yourself if the topic is affecting you or folks you know/love.

Tech Addition is REAL

"Aside from correlations to mental health disorders like social anxiety and depression, recent studies have shown that smartphone addiction costs corporate America around$54B annually in lost productivity.

"In an unprecedented move two major stockholders are pressuring Apple to address the growing concern of smartphone addiction.

"They urged the company to design more intuitive ways for parents to safeguard their children’s devices, and called for them to build a committee of experts “to assist additional research efforts.
"The World Health Organization recently classified video game addiction as a mental health condition, and a large number of health professionals believe device addiction is going to get worse as technology gets faster and smarter.

It’s not just Apple...they might be in the hot seat right now, but the US, on the whole, has been late to the game on preventative measures to curb overuse.

Australia, China, Japan, India and many others already treat tech addiction like a serious disorder, naming it a public health crisis and investing in in-patient treatment facilities."

Thursday, January 4, 2018

It's Snowing!!!! What Will YOU Do?

Last night, when you knew it was going to snow and that your activities today would be affected, what did you think?

Yipppeeeee!!! Off today! I can kick back/clean up/play/relax!


Dang! Gotta find a way to get into work; maybe go in late; tons of folks calling; folks saying they can’t make it (well, I’ll make it so why can’t they?)


Well, I guess I can get some work done from home.

Some folks are fortunate and don’t have jobs in which they MUST be at work. Others aren’t so lucky…and others won’t be going to work, but they need to be there for reasons of pay.

Snow is beautiful and, sometimes, fun…but it affects many of us in different ways.

Let’s wish the folks who MUST be out in it well…law enforcement, road workers, EMTs and employees who are in businesses that can’t close. Let’s all say a prayer that those folks get home safely.

Let’s hope good things for folks who are in shelters and churches or sleeping under bridges.

As for those of us at home, let’s try to get something constructive done today. If you have children with you try to remember what it was like when it snowed and you were that age. Try to create a memory instead of a headache.

Good luck with the weather. Stay warm. Stay off the roads if possible.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Is It Chasing Me??!!!

2017 is gone, campers!!!! My tires are squealing and I’m checking my rearview mirror to make sure the year is not chasing me! 

All you really grown up, mature, Type A’s have already created your goal list for 2018. You sat down over the holidays (some of you did this at Thanksgiving) and looked back at 2017, congratulated yourself on completing a lot of the goals you set during the holidays in 2016 and looked ahead to the coming year.

The rest of us are still taking down Christmas decorations, shipping the gifts we should have sent 2 weeks ago and thinking, “Are you kidding? 2018 is already here?”

No worries. You’re in good company.

Here’s what you do: Get paper and pen (you can do this electronically, but it won’t be as effective) and draw a VERY big T on the paper. At the top, on the left-hand side, put a plus sign, on the right put a minus sign. 

During the next couple of days simply take a little time to look back at 2017 and ask, “What happened that I’d like to have happen again?” List those things under the plus sign. Then, ask, “What happened that I wouldn’t want to happen again?” Those go under the minus sign.

You will have some items on both sides that are one-offs, those things that happen only once or once in a while. 

There will be immediate thoughts that come to you. Jot those down. If you give this exercise a couple of days, though, your subconscious will work on it and you’ll get examples you might not have thought about if you simply do the exercise in an hour.

Your goals/hopes/resolutions for 2018 will come from the two lists. Here’s how you do it. Ask yourself, “How do I make sure the good things happen again, or, more often, or, better?” and “How do I keep the negative things from happening again, or, that they will happen less frequently, or, when they do happen they aren’t as bad?”

Sure, pick a monster goal or two. Use the improvements you are making as stepping stones to get to those peaks. 

This simple exercise helps you create a coming year in which you will make continuous progress. You are more likely to approach the year positively knowing you’ll get more of what you want and less of what you don’t want.

And, you’ll be more likely—on January 2, 2019—to be looking in your rearview mirror and thinking, “You know, 2018 was pretty good and I’m going to make 2019 even better!!”

If you know someone who could use this idea forward it to them.